Got a minute? If you're a busy manager, that's about all you have. That's why Carla Cross, management coach, speaker, and author, has created this blog just for you, with ready-to-use tips to master management through people.

Do You Have a Group or a Team?


This January and February, I’m featuring the topic ‘leadership’. Why? Because it’s one of the biggest real estate industry trends (and probably world trends) of 2012 and beyond. Look for leadership strategies and trends (not just in the real estate industry), plus ready-to-use documents to go from ‘maintenance management’ to leadership. And, check out my complimentary recorded A�webinar for leadership. See more below, too.

A Group is Not a Team

So, you’ve got a group of people together in an office. They’re a team, right? Wrong. Until the leader orchestrates teaming, the group is just a group. Can’t associates start teams without the support of the manager? Sure, but the leader (who, I assume thinks he/she is the leader) can’t be assured that the team is going in the direction that’s best for everyone. (Prima donnas, anyone?) Reminds me of the saying, “Where are they going? How many of them were there? I must find them. I’m their leader….”

When a group of musicians gathers to play together, we first have to decide where we’re going–the tune we’ll play. We must decide what key it will be in, and what rhythm we’ll use. To make these decisions, we find ourselves starting to cooperate and compromise, to share the talents of each player. I’ve played in musical groups that obviously weren’t teaming–just getting through the tune. That’s no fun, and actually takes more energy than it’s worth.A� I’ve played in other groups that were so attuned to each other, that it the joy in creating became so infectious that we all played better than we knew we could. That’s when a team starts happening.

Creating Team SynergyA�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�

A�Without the synergy of the team feeling in an office, agents (and manager) spend too much energy just fighting to stay in business. Managers spend too much time with crisis management, constantly handling internal and external conflict. Working together toward common, inspiring goals, crisis management shrinks, while inspiring leadership blossoms. With teaming, agents and manager perform to higher standards than they thought they could. With consumer expectations so high today, it’s much safer, and a better way to reduce risk, to orchestrate methods where agents are working together for the best interests of the consumer. That takes teaming.

A�Taking another look at ‘teams’ in the real estate office. There are three reasons why the industry should redefine teams–and use them:

A�A�A�A�A�A� 1. The public is pressuring real estate companies to be accountable to them. When they call a manager, they want to know “who is supervising that agent?” Risks could be reduced greatly by agents working more closely together for the good of the consumer–and much more return business, at low cost,A� could be generated.

A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A� 2. The industry is changing too quickly for managers or agents toA� keep up ‘on their own’. Too much information too fast– on our own, we simply can’t process and prioritize this A�information sufficiently well to compete in the future. AgentsA� who have been extremely independent are finding out that the isolation they thought they treasured is leaving themA� behind the learning curve.A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�

A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A�A� 3. The business world internationally is using new combinations of teams to manage their new work force–the values of Generation X and Y. With more workers staying home to work, or working in a ‘mobile office, the most successful businesses in the world areA� finding that innovative teams solve the problems of ‘culturizing’A�A�A�A� and sharing vision. As real estate offices hire more of theseA�A�people, they must change their management strategies to fit theA�A�style of the Generation X and Yers, who value education, information, and teamwork.A�

Translating teams to the real estate office. One of the biggest concerns of real estate companies today is raising the productivity of their agents. Those of us in performance fields know that raising performance comes from associating–working with–the best. Creatively orchestrating people working together is the best way to enhance performance.A�A�

What’s your take on teamwork and the real estate industry? Have you had success creating a team?


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